Acts of kindness when an audience is watching are easy. But extending a helping hand to those in need when you think nobody will find out is a greater measure of one’s character.
And while teens tend to get a bad rap for the way they choose to spend their free time, there are plenty who are looking out for others in their community, as one woman recently found out.
Jenna Steele was stopped at an intersection in Toledo, Ohio, when she saw three teenagers approach a homeless man.
The boys, oblivious to the fact that Steele was taking their photo, walked over to a homeless man who was standing on the side of the road.
“Just sat at the corner of Jackman & Alexis sobbing my eyes out,” Steele wrote on her Facebook profile.
“A car of 3 teenage boys pulled in to the gas station, parked their car, they all got out and one by one took their wallets out and handed this homeless man some cash. They then shook his hand and went on their way.”
The three boys, later identified as Isaac Reed, Zach Renaud, and Deshaun Wood, are students at Whiteford Agricultural School.
“Let’s stop giving attention to the youth that do these horrible acts and start giving attention to THESE kind of kids,” Steele said in her post on February 25.
After her photo was shared around 2,000 times, Steele found out a little more about the boys and their kind act.
“Well now that this has been shared over 2,000 times … the young man in the middle, his dad contacted me via messenger. His son is 17 and a senior at Whiteford high school,” she said in a comment on Facebook.
“And now grandma of kid in the red shirt. Said these boys are all best friends and are always doing things like this,” she said. “And now one of the boys … this made my whole day.”
Coincidentally, the boys were out filming a video for YouTube in which they go around town doing acts of kindness for strangers. They never could have imagined this kind of popularity.
“My friends and I decided we will make a YouTube channel talking to homeless people hearing their stories and giving them food and supplies. Stay Tuned,” wrote Issac Reed in a comment.
“We are doing this because of the positive feedback and would like to show that other people can do the same. Thank you for the support!”
Steele was blown away by the response—the photo has now been shared over 90,000 times.
“I was so happy to [have] seen it and even more happy to be contacted by two of the boys and them thanking ME. For what?! I didn’t do anything,” Steele wrote in a comment.
“They just wanted to thank me for spreading the positivity further. Wow! THAT is how I choose to look at our youth. Amazing young men! Thank you for being the light in this sometimes ugly world.”